I have been in the fashion and beauty business since 1977. In that time, I have developed many opinions in that arena. People have often suggested that I write a book. I don’t think I am patient enough for that process, but I will share my thoughts with you. I have many. If you find this amusing or helpful, feel free to follow me on Facebook. Also check my Instagram pages for Nan Patrick and Nan Patrick Mary Kay.
Alright, here goes… some of my “Nan-isms”
1. Put your lipstick on like you mean it. Doesn’t matter if it’s light, dark or bright.
2. Don’t be afraid to go up in size… well-fitting clothing can make you look like you’ve lost 10 pounds.
3. Find your best asset and capitalize on it. And yes…You’ve got great assets. I promise.
4. Everyone has flaws, I simply don’t choose to wear them like a badge of honor.
5. If you don’t know what looks good on you, ask someone whose look you admire. Who wouldn’t be flattered to help you?
6. Try not to shop for an occasion. You usually have to settle. Purchase when you see things you love. If your lifestyle is casual, don’t go overboard for dressy items. One or two outfits will get you through wedding invitations etc.
7. Mix patterns. So fun! Works especially if the fabric or colors are similar.
8. Accessories customize your look.
9. Layer your necklaces. Again, so much fun!
10. Mix lipstick colors. You get some great “unique to you” looks.
11. Wear foundation… keeps your moisturizer in and the junk in the environment out.
12. Wash and moisturize your face right after dinner. Once you sit on the couch for the night… you are a goner.
13. You age two days for every night you don’t wash and moisturize. You are dehydrating your skin and you are letting the bacteria from the environment have their way with your collagen all night long.
14. Purchase clothes that intrinsically work on YOU. This way, outfits look best on day one and long after. Buying trends is costly and not all trends will flatter you… style or colorwise.
15. Buy quality. Again, you look great on day one and long after.
16. Mix real and costume jewelry.
17. One purse for everything does no work… Just like one pair of shoes does not work with everything. (Keep all of the little things in a travel/makeup bag so it easily can be transferred from bag to bag.)
18. Buy good underwear. You are worth it. Replace items as they get dingy. Start your day with items that say, “I’m worth it”.
19. Always look at the sale rack. While doing that… rule of thumb, don’t buy it on sale if you would not buy it full price.
20. While buying online, make sure you check the return policy. If it’s not an easy process? Pass. Don’t keep items you wouldn’t purchase if you tried them on in the store.
21. Rinsing your face with water and no soap is like going to the carwash and saying, “it’s ok, just use water to clean my car.”
22. Keep your wardrobe as visible as possible. You wear it if you can see it.
23. If you haven’t worn it in two years? You probably won’t wear it. Exception… special occasion clothing.
24. No matter how cute, don’t buy shoes that hurt in the store. It only gets worse.
25. Buy good quality clothing for the size you are. Throw out the thought, “I want to lose weight so I won’t spend the money on this beautiful________.”
26. Stop whining if you have to shorten things. One, be grateful you have legs and two, if you are too tall, you can’t add fabric.
27. If you are not good at any of this, there are those who can help you. Delegating your visual image is totally ok.
28. Take care of your teeth. Nothing says old more than yellowing teeth. Use a tooth brightener once or twice a year.
29. I love this one…you don’t have to floss all of your teeth, just the ones you want to keep.
30. Invest in a good hair stylist. You wear your hair every day. (I am lucky, I figured out how to cut my own hair) Before that? I invested in the best stylists in town.
31. Pay attention to your brows. Eyebrows are the gateway to your face.
32. Brows are sisters, they are not twins, don’t stress when they are not a perfect match.
33. Know the colors which flatter you best. Work around a color scheme. You’ll have a wardrobe which mixes much better, and your wardrobe choices will become endless.
34. Black is always the most available color. Learn how to utilize black to flatter your coloring.
35. When you are in a store, browsing or otherwise, be nice to the sales person. Don’t tell her you are just looking. You will be surprised what she/he can put together for you. They also know their inventory way better than you do.
36. If you are not a sewer, find a good seamstress or tailor. Alterations are so handy to make your outfit perfect for you.
37. Try a lipliner. It defines the shape of your mouth.
38. Bright lip color makes your eyes look bright and your teeth look white. Find the bright one which works for you. We all have a bright color which is great on us.
39. As you get older, your styles and preferences may change. Beware of frumpiness. It’s never the only option. Again,if you think you need help, you probably do. Hire an image consultant or a friend who knows.
40. Younger women wear makeup to look more sophisticated and older women wear makeup to look younger.
41. When using makeup, use good brushes. It’s much easier to write with a pencil that is new than using one that is a little stub. The same principle goes for makeup brushes. The little brushes which go into compacts are not that useful.
42. Learn what your brushes are designed to do. Using the right brush makes all of the difference when applying makeup.
43. If you paint a wall with your fingers, you will get textured walls, Same goes for applying foundation to your face. Use a foundation brush, your skin will look natural and a lot more even.
44. Wash your foundation brush with a basic antibacterial soap daily. Your skin will thank you.
45. Try tonal outfits. If you have clothes hanging around that are the same color but not quite the same shade, throw them together and see what effect they have. Different tones of the same color often add depth to an outfit and look great.
46. Accessories are fun, but sometimes, less is more. If you are wearing a strapless dress, it doesn’t necessarily need a necklace. Try long earrings instead.
47. Saving your outfits or accessories for “good” is a waste. Here’s an example. Combine jeans with a dressy sandal.
48. Washable clothing is more convenient. Check care labels before you purchase. Know whether you are the type to take things to the dry cleaner.
49. If your partner or friend doesn’t like an outfit you are wearing? Try to develop a thicker skin. A good reply could be, “that’s ok, you’ll like the next look better, stay tuned. “
50. Be kind to yourself. Be willing to make color and fashion mistakes. A lot of this is trial and error. Like sports, fashion and image take practice to get good at.